BRAVE ENOUGH TO DARE: IN CONVERSATION WITH FRANCESCA SACCHI TOMMASI

FRANCESCA SACCHI TOMMASI Photo Credit: Gabriele Rigon

After attending the Koefia Academy of High Fashion in Rome, a brief stint organising fashions shows in Milan – Prada and Fendi amongst others – and working in art galleries in Positano, Francesca Sacchi Tommasi returned to her roots with the opening of Etra Studio Tommasi in Florence, an art space located in what used to be her grandfather’s studio. In this interview, she talks about beauty, passion and purpose, and why art is in her DNA. (Main photo by Gabriele Rigon, Black and Red Bracelet by Gaetano Pesce, Marble Eyewear…

JAVIER MARÍN: CORPUS

EN BLANCO - JAVIER MARÍN, 2015

Since the first time I saw the works of the Mexican sculptor Javier Marin in Milan – roughly 10 years ago at the Rotonda of via Besana, in the square of Palazzo Reale and at Piazza della Scala – I have been surprised by the monumentality and expressive power of his work. I have been lucky to see other works of his dotted around the world and despite the use of different materials, dimensions and subjects, each time my attention has been drawn to them like metal to a magnet.…

YOU & ME: ROBERTO CAMBI

YOU&ME - ROBERTO CAMBI, 2018

Why don’t we like changes? We don’t just resist making them, we resist being changed. The constant shift to adapt to different times and new circumstances is a vital process not just in our development as individuals, but also in the complex nature of human relationships. Yet most of the times it is fiercely opposed. And what is supposed to be a nurturing environment becomes a stifling one. YOU & ME is a double sided piece. Hanging from the ceiling at eye level, it is an invitation to peep through the…

A BLACK CLOUD ON THE HORIZON

SEVEN DEMONS - ROBERTO CAMBI, 2017

In Comrades of Time, Boris Groys writes: ‘We are familiar with the critique of presence, especially as formulated by Jacques Derrida, who has shown—convincingly enough—that the present is originally corrupted by past and future, that there is always absence at the heart of presence, and that history, including art history, cannot be interpreted, to use Derrida’s expression, as a procession of presences’. Roberto Cambi has shown an unwavering fascination with time and temporality throughout his career. His large scale installations might have roots in the past, but they are decidedly…

ANOTHER TIME AT FOLKESTONE TRIENNIAL

ANOTHER TIME XXI - ANTONY GORMLEY, 2013

Three solid cast-iron sculptures from ANOTHER TIME (1999-2013), a series of one hundred figures created by Antony Gormley, have been loaned by the artist to the Folkestone Triennial. Two can be found on the seafront in Folkestone and one by the Turner Contemporary in Margate. They are all placed within reach of the tide and, at certain times, are partly or entirely submerged by the water. Folkestone Triennial runs until 05 November 2017.   ANOTHER TIME XXI in Folkestone ANOTHER TIME XVIII in Folkestone ANOTHER TIME XXI in Margate

ANTONY GORMLEY: OBJECT

ANTONY GORMLEY - FALL 1999

‘Fall 1999’ is a collection of drawings somehow reminiscent of Antony Gormley’s ‘New York’ series of 1997-1998. Though the urban landscape has been stripped away and there is just one lonely figure per piece, they too revisit the interaction between human body and void. ‘Object 1999’ is a cast-iron sculpture of the artist’s body suspended from the ceiling of the Main Hall, a first for the National Portrait Gallery, eerily overseeing the flow of visitors on the escalator to the second floor. It can be seen from many angles within the gallery, reminding us to…

TURNER PRIZE: 2016

ANTHEA HAMILTON: LICHEN! LIBIDO! CHASTITY!

Whilst it might be true that the Turner Prize has become one of the best-known and most-talked about prizes in the visual arts world, we could argue that notorious would be a more befitting adjective to describe it. Since its inception in 1984, it has been awarded to one artist out of four shortlisted, allegedly in recognition of an outstanding exhibition or body of work in the preceding year. They are mostly conspicuous rather than exceptionally good. ANTHEA HAMILTON: LICHEN! LIBIDO! CHASTITY! In a room covered by brick wallpaper, like the…

DALE CHIHULY: GARDEN AND GLASS

We first came across mention of Dale Chihuly‘s work on a visit to glassblowers and their studios on a trip which took us from Helsinki to Nuutajärvi. Between 1995 and 1996, he travelled to glass factories in Finland – and then Mexico, Ireland and Italy – to brainstorm and experiment for his project ‘Chihuly Over Venice’. While in Nuutajärvi, he floated his creations on water and loaded them onto wooden boats so that they could be carried and suspended underneath bridges. This must have been the inspiration for the two large wooden boats brimming…

HELSINKI NOIR – A CRIME TO SOLVE

Helsinki Noir

Visitors aren’t just invited to view, but inhabit the places of ’Helsinki Noir’ at the Amos Anderson Art Museum in Helsinki. Set against the backdrop of the Finnish capital in the 1930s, the narrative of the exhibition opens with a crime scene. The body of a young woman in a short dress and silk stockings is found floating in the sea just off Kaivopuisto park. You’d be forgiven for thinking you have just stepped into the set of an elaborate episode of David Suchet’s Poirot. What happened to the woman…

A THREATENING NEW DIMENSION IN NUMBERS

CULTURE, ANOTHER NATURE REPAIRED - KADER ATTIA, 2015

The unconscious attribution of human traits or characteristics to inanimate forms is a built-in mechanism which enables humankind to cope with, and somehow relate to, anything new and unknown. To some extent this applies to the art world too. The projection of such human features onto drawn, painted or sculpted objects brings meaning to, and builds a connection with, a reality which may in fact not have rules or significance. The infinite number of possibilities of expression available to an artist is left barely explored as people cannot regain absolute artistic freedom once the…